Are you familiar with the carol Good King Wenceslas? Knowing a few bars of the tune, and some of the lyrics, I was vaguely familiar with it. Then, we visited the library and I found two books in the music section. Each used the words of the carol as the text and added illustrations. The verses tell the story of a medieval king of Bohemia. Apparently, he was loved greatly by his people for his kindness, and the story of the carol recounts his generosity.
The two books we read are both entitled Good King Wenceslas. The first, illustrated by John Wallner, offers lovely watercolor illustrations. In contrast, the second features illustrations in a wood block style indicative of the medieval time period. It is illustrated by Christopher Manson. Both are excellent to read. The book illustrated by Wallner allows the reader to visualize the story easily. However, Manson's block print illustrations and text give the reader a feel for the medieval time period in which Wenceslas lived. Together, the two allowed us to understand and appreciate the carol a little bit more this Christmas season. My only disappointment is that I did not find these books last year when we were studying this time period in history.
Linked to Read-Aloud Thursday at Hope Is the Word